Our nonprofit needs a payment and donation solution
December 21, 2016 2:37 PM   Subscribe

I work for a small nonprofit and we are having trouble coming up with a solution to a multifaceted problem because there are too many options and we can't tell which one would be the best. Hivemind, please join me inside for snowflakes:

We've got a gift shop on site using Revel POS, but our web store is not in any way integrated with it, and Revel's web platform isn't going to cut it. It does sync with Shopify, but Shopify isn't set up for recurring donations. There's a Shopify plugin that can handle recurring donations, but it doesn't allow custom donation amounts, and it doesn't play friendly with Wordpress, which is where the rest of our website's information currently is.

We're hoping to wrap CRM, donations and the online store into one system, or else some combination of systems which can all use the same payment gateway to ease the headache on our accounting department. We're tearing our hair out because there are a hundred different companies that offer similar services but each has slightly different details and we can't get anything to match up.

What/who should I be researching to find a platform that meets all of our demands?
posted by BuddhaInABucket to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm not an expert in this area at all, but in terms of reducing the search space one scenario is to start with Stripe and see what ties into it. 5 min of Googling says you might end up with Shopify POS but use straight Stripe on the website to do the donations and subscriptions. They say they have nonprofit pricing.

I recently had got into Stripe because it was used by one platform we used and then we needed a more flexible recurring subscription -- my web developer spun up the checkout options in an hour on WordPress. Stunned by the ease of use.
posted by troyer at 3:00 PM on December 21, 2016

Why not just bag Wordpress and move everything to a single platform? I was consulting for non-profits in the tech space up until about a year ago, and we had basically decided to use something like Classy for everything for just the reasons you stated. All in one, every reasonable integration you might want, and the prices were more than fair (at the time.) Hope I'm not missing anything in your question that might disqualify using something like Classy.
posted by littlerobothead at 6:50 PM on December 21, 2016

We use Salsa for everything you mentioned. It's not bad overall. Their customer service has been a little uneven.
posted by kimdog at 7:23 PM on December 21, 2016

If I were building this system, I'd use WordPress, WooCommerce for the gift shop, and Give (https://givewp.com) for the donations. I believe it supports recurring ones.
posted by Meagan at 2:18 PM on December 22, 2016 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Hi! I work for a web design company for nonprofits. My previous job was as the head of the training department for a nonprofit CRM.

With all due respect to littlerobothead, I don't agree with the idea of ditching WP and moving over to something like Classy. Fundraising platforms are not CMS systems, and I've had lots of clients who have regretted the decision to host their full website on a fundraising platform.

While I know it can be a pain in the butt, I'd strongly recommend using a CRM system that is separate from your CMS and website for processing donations. Using something like Stripe or Give or Classy for donations may work now, but as you grow (and especially if you want to push recurring donations), you will eventually need to move to a CRM, and that's going to be a lot easier to do now if you have the funds than to wait until you're bursting at the seams using a cobbled-together solution.

As someone else mentioned, Salsa is a great option that does everything you're looking for. NeonCRM is comparable, as well. You may also want to take a look at Idealware's CRM report. Idealware is a nonprofit that evaluates technology for nonprofits. This report is from 2013 so it's pretty outdated, but it will at least give you an idea of some of the players in the market. I believe they should be coming out with an updated version in the next few months.

Software Advice is another good site that will show you some options and reviews.

Hope this helps! Feel free to PM me for more info.
posted by anotheraccount at 7:09 AM on December 23, 2016 [3 favorites]

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